What Effects Does Sleep Deprivation Have on Driving?

Driving requires full alertness, undivided attention and the ability to react swiftly to changing situations. However, these vital abilities can be severely impaired by sleep deprivation. Insufficient sleep impacts one’s driving capabilities in many ways, and there are certain legal implications for accidents caused by drowsy driving in California. Our attorneys at The Law Office of Scott Righthand, P.C., are ready to help you seek your entitled compensation. If you were injured by a drowsy driver, contact our firm for a consultation. 

Understanding the Impacts of Drowsy Driving

Drowsy driving accidents are often characterized by a unique set of circumstances. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) highlights these distinct characteristics:

  • The vehicle often veers off the road or highway.
  • Little to no effort is made by the drowsy driver to avoid the collision.
  • High speeds are frequently involved, escalating the severity of the accident.
  • Significant property loss and serious injuries are common outcomes.
  • Crashes typically occur late at night, early in the morning or mid-afternoon when drivers are most likely to feel fatigued.

Sleep Deprivation and Driving: A Dangerous Combination

Lack of adequate sleep is a significant contributor to road accidents. According to a report by the American Automobile Association (AAA), drivers who sleep for only five to six hours double their risk of being involved in a serious car crash compared to those who get at least seven hours of sleep. The risk intensifies for drivers who sleep for only four to five hours, equating their likelihood of causing an accident to that of a drunk driver.

Sleep deprivation impairs several critical cognitive functions necessary for safe driving. It diminishes the ability to make wise choices, impairs reaction times and reduces focus and attention on the road. The ultimate impact is sometimes the inability to resist falling asleep behind the wheel, leading to catastrophic accidents.

Legal Implications of Sleep-Deprived Driving

When a sleep-deprived driver causes an accident, they may face severe legal consequences. These can range from fines and penalties to imprisonment, depending on the severity of the accident. If a victim sustains injuries or loses their life due to the negligence of a drowsy driver, the victim or their family has the right to seek compensation for their losses. This compensation can cover medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering and other damages related to the accident.

At The Law Office of Scott Righthand, P.C., we have over 35 years of experience in helping victims of motor vehicle collisions obtain justice. We are committed to aggressively litigating on behalf of our clients to ensure they receive the compensation they deserve.

Seek Legal Assistance If You Were Injured

Sleep deprivation and driving are a lethal combination, causing thousands of accidents each year. As the statistics reveal, driving while drowsy is as dangerous as drunk driving and can lead to severe legal consequences. However, if you or a loved one has been a victim of a sleep-deprived driver, know that you have legal options available.

At The Law Office of Scott Righthand, P.C., we understand the pain and suffering such accidents can cause. Our experienced team is ready to fight for your rights and help you secure the compensation you need to recover. Contact us today for a no-obligation case evaluation. Remember, you owe us nothing unless your case is resolved.

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Date Of Posting

09 April,2024

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